Why were ISIS, Qaeda and Nusra muftis quick to support Qatar?

Mamdouh AlMuhaini
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Extremists and leaders of terrorist outfits have insulted the countries that severed ties with Qatar while praising the regime in Doha.

Abdullah al-Muhaisni, Mufti of al-Nusra started this, followed by ISIS advocate Hamed Al-Ali in Kuwait. Khalid Batarfi, leader of the al-Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula/Yemen (AQAP), issued a statement in which he praised the Muslim Brotherhood and Qatar, and from Turkey, Wajdi Ghneim denounced the boycott and accused that the boycotting states as aligning with the infidels and the Crusaders. Even retired extremists were quick to spring to action, with Abu Hafs al-Mauritani, the former Mufti of al-Qaeda, expressing his solidarity with Doha.


There is a long list of extremists and wanted terrorists, all of whom stood in line with the Qatari government.

There is no need to ask why they are behind this, but it would be strange if they defended Saudi Arabia, UAE, Egypt and Bahrain. Friends stand with each other! Their solidarity positions are the kind of response that partners make to one another in a crisis. It is also a logical position to defend their interests and activities, which will inevitably be affected by the severing of Doha’s financial and media lines which has sustained them for years.

Sanctuary for extremism

There is close cooperation and alliance between these figures and militants and the Qatari government, which provided them with sanctuary, money and platforms to broadcast their extremist speeches and ideas that incite hatred and violence.

Doha has become a haven for extremists and terrorists who are pursued in their own countries, enjoying a comfortable stay and a platform to spread their sick ideology. At the same time, it formed a transit or a meeting point and movement among extremists - providing money or fighters in the fields.

Extremists from the neighboring countries of the Muslim Brotherhood and al-Suriri beliefs, which seek to spread the idea of absolute religious jurist governance, found in Qatar and its officials the right destination. They received hospitality in the princes’ palaces, received financial and moral support, and thus they carried out the joint propaganda goals that bind them with the Qatari government.

False narrative

For them, Doha has become the residence of the oppressed and the hope of the disadvantaged, while the other countries are the source of the injustice and their fated for division and destruction. From this idea they have woven an intellectual, revolutionary and media narrative that seeks to destroy the neighboring countries by all possible means, even if it transgresses into the assassinations of kings and leaders.

It is remarkable that all this chaos is taking place amid a complete absence from the Qatari society that is stuck in the middle of the crisis because of the political behavior of its ruling regime.

What is commonplace elsewhere in the world, where the people of the country are the preachers, muftis, intellectuals and opinion leaders, in Qatar on the other hand, we see the strangest scenes of all. Qatari moderates and educated are totally cut off from the religious, cultural and media scene. All the focus and attention is on extremists and those pursued in their own countries – where they caused crises and incitement to rebellion – and who are even welcomed with kisses of appreciation on their foreheads.

There is nothing wrong with embracing others and to naturalize them. On the contrary, it is an important and positive element, provided it is useful. But why are the suspicious and dangerous characters being attracted and invited?

It is certain that if Qatari citizens had an opinion, they would establish a wiser and more moderate speech, or at least not create conflicts and deep rifts with Gulf and Arab states. This was the case in the past where the traditional religious institutions in Qatar used to adopt a traditional religious speech and approach. Now in its place, we see extreme politicized figures joining the line and commanding the authority.

All this would not have happened if the Qatari regime had not planned it, tried to use extremist ideology, enabled its men and financed militants and directed them to undermine and conspire against brothers and friends close and afar.


Nevertheless, Qatari officials speak in the Western media about the injustice they are facing, talk about their national sovereignty, and accuse others of supporting terrorism, which is exactly what they are doing.

The countries who have boycotted Qatar are engaged in the necessary intellectual and moral fight on behalf of all the countries and societies conquered and terrorized by the extremists. There are the ones who killed their children and turned their feasts into funerals. It is important to eliminate the source of terrorism. For this reason, the Iranian regime, al-Qaeda and ISIS muftis have jointly agreed to insult Saudi Arabia and the UAE.

What a coincidence!
Mamdouh AlMuhaini is the Editor-in-Chief of Al Arabiya News Channel’s digital platforms. He can be followed on Twitter @malmhuain.

Disclaimer: Views expressed by writers in this section are their own and do not reflect Al Arabiya English's point-of-view.
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